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Independence Patriot of the Month - October
Date 2007-09-29 오후 8:59:16 View 3141
Kwon Deuk-su [1877.10.4-1907.9.2]

The Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs (Minister Kim Jung-bok) designated, in consultation with the Korea Liberation Association and the Independence Hall of Korea, Kwon Deuk-su (1877.10.4-1907.9.2) who led a righteous army(Uibyeong) in the Gangwon and Gyeonggi provinces to fight against the Japanese as Independence Patriot of October this year marking the 100th anniversary of his death.

Born in Yangju-gun, Gyeonggi-do in 1877, Kwon Deuk-su was raised in Paju-gun. When the Ulsa Treaty was made, he sold all his assets to raise military funds to reverse the faltering fate of this nation and went down to Yangpyeong to launch an uprising against the Japanese ruling. Afterwards, he continued Uibyeong activities in Yangju and Pocheon of the Gyeonggi province as well as in Hongcheon, Whacheon, and Chuncheon of the Gangwon province.

The Uibyeong force he was leading once grew to a 400-strong army and he joined forces with another righteous armies in Uijin including the one led by Min Geung-ho.

When the Uibyeong movement got fierce in and around Yangpyeong in August 1907, Japan plotted to suppress them and waged a flurry of fights with Uibyeong forces in the area from August 23 through 26.

Before engaging in the fights with the Japanese, Kwon encouraged the members of the Uibyeong force by saying "If we rather fight to death than live as slaves of the Japanese, our future generations will proudly live a life of grace." He died at the age of 31 in a fierce fight with the Japanese force on September 2, 1907.

He was awarded Aeguk Jang (the Order of Patriotism) in 1990.
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